Although our bodies breathe happily on their own, it is the only system in the body we can become aware of and control as we choose.
Louise Westra, Naturopath at The Spa at Gleneagles, Scotland
When we escape our busy urban lifestyles, we naturally find ourselves breathing more deeply, says Louise. This fresh, good quality air contains less airborne toxins, meaning our body isn’t wasting energy getting rid of them. What’s more, breathing deeply heightens our exposure to oxygen, making us feel cognitively more alive, giving us clarity of thought and helping us manage stress far better.
Spa Inspiration | One&Only Le Saint Géran, Mauritius
With its mountainous forests and low levels of air pollution, Mauritius is considered by the World Health Organisation to have the greatest air quality on the planet. Where better to breathe deep?
Having undergone a recent transformation, our spa partner in Mauritius – One&Only Le Saint Géran – represents an exhilarating retreat, with its beach-inspired interiors, diversity of spaces, activities and flavours, and powerfully immersive treatment menu designed by us.
We recommend | The Only You Massage
Personalised to your physical and emotional needs, this holistic experience combines guided breathing, carefully chosen aromatherapy blends and a full body and head massage. Restorative in every way, it quietens the mind, releases tension and rebalances energies.
At home | Guided breathing
Fundamental to the benefits of this massage is guided breathing. Enjoy these at home whenever you need with this simple guide from ESPA Senior Trainer, Nicola Baillie:
Sit or lie quietly and bring all your attention to the physical act of breathing.
- Breathe in for a count of four. Feel your abdomen expand as you take in the air.
- Hold your breath at the top of your inhalation for a count of two or three.
- Exhale fully for a count of four to six, releasing all the stagnant air from your lungs.
- Hold your breath at the bottom for a count of two or three. This ensures your next inhalation is a deeper one.
- Repeat three or four times.
Expert tip: To enhance the effects, I’d recommend first infusing your room with the comforting scents from our Restorative Candle or Reed Diffuser. Alternatively, warm a few drops of Restorative Body Oil (used in the above Only You Massage) in the palms of your hands and cup your hands over your nose for each breathing sequence.